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Ann Behav Med. 2005 Apr;29 Suppl:29-34.

Motivational interviewing in community-based research: experiences from the field.

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Weight Control and Diabetes Research Center, The Miriam Hospital/Brown Medical School, Providence, RI 02903, USA.


Motivational Interviewing (MI) has been established as an effective psychotherapeutic treatment for problem drinking in clinical settings. Consequently, there is a growing interest in applying MI to facilitate change across other health behaviors, such as tobacco use, eating habits, and physical activity in a variety of community-based research settings. These extended applications pose new challenges regarding implementation and evaluation. For instance, investigators must consider how best to train intervention counselors; implement strategies for preserving the MI spirit, despite limited client contact time; incorporate adjunctive strategies that support brief MI sessions; and develop a plan for monitoring and evaluating MI treatment fidelity. This article highlights specific examples of how several behavior change research projects applied MI across a variety of settings and populations, provides lessons learned from our experience as a collaborative workgroup, and offers strategies for consideration in future community-based research.

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